Contemporary Expression


Life Comes in Layers and Builds With Color
August 11, 2009, 1:42 pm
Filed under: Frist Center, Painting, The Art Files

There is a wonderful show up a The Frist Center for the Visual Arts.
Chuck Close Prints Process and Collaboration
June 26–September 13, 2009
I was first introduced to Chuck Close’s work on a visit to the Art Institute of Chicago several years ago. I was amazed at his “fingerprint” paintings. I was thrilled to see that The Frist had brought a collection of his prints for view.
I was thrilled to see that the process was part of the exhibition. As we were reading and learning and viewing I was struck by the profound nature of the layering of life.
Each experience and every encounter brings color and layer to the picture of our life. As we grow and learn and rally life into our world our reality is effected.
What you see at the Frist is profoundly different when you realize that everything Chuck Close painted or carved or printed after 1988 he did after “The Event”.

“The Event”
On December 7, 1988, Close felt a strange pain in his chest. That day he was in New York about to give an art award. He begged to present first, went on stage, quickly read his speech and then ran to the hospital. Within a few hours, Close was paralyzed from the neck down. At first the doctors were confused but eventually they diagnosed a rare spinal artery collapse. Close called that day, “The Event”. For months Close was in rehab strengthening his muscles; he soon had slight movement in his arms and could walk, yet only for a few steps. He has relied on a wheelchair since. However, Close continued to paint on with a brush strapped onto his wrist with tape, creating large portraits in low-resolution grid squares created by an assistant.
Do you have an event in your life that has added the layer of color and texture and movement that has summoned your soul to push forward, to move on, to paint your life and your vision, no matter what?

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